Friday, May 25, 2012

60-51 SLJ's Top Children's Novels

I am a day behind! Here are the next ten. Not as many of my favorites today, but still some excellent titles. As always all links lead to Fuse 8.
60.  Bud, Not Buddy by Christopher Paul Curtuis
This is a wonderful book, historical fiction that is about the characters and not the time period.

59. The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo
I am not a huge fan of this one despite loving DiCamillo's books in general. It is beautiful writing, marvelous illustrations. The story? Not real sure what DiCamillo was trying for there.

58. Swallows and Amazons by Arthur Ransome
Just not my thing at all. All that nature.

57. The Wolves of Willoughby Chase by Joan Aiken
THIS is my thing. Orphans! Evil Guardians! Old house! England! I love it, delightfully creepy and just scary enough it is a delight for the imagination.

56. A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett
Not my favorite Burnett. Or even my favorite classic. Still the perfect book for little girls who love this type of story.

55. All of a Kind Family by Sydney Taylor
I have never read this one. The cover and the descriptions make me think it is a little too precious for my tastes. I can see how it would have a dedicated following though.

54. Half Magic by Edward Eager
This book. It has a special place in my heart. It was the first read aloud I did with Bit where she was completely sucked in. She had enjoyed other chapter books we read together, but this was the first one that had her begging for 3-4 chapters a night. More importantly it was the book that caused her to realize she had reach the point where she could read them on her own. She read this one again right after we had finished it together.  And then read Magic by the Lake (the first novel I found her asleep on top of) and Seven Day Magic. In addition to my sentimental attachment to it is just good delightful fun.

53. The Graveyard Book by Niel Gaiman
This is a favorite. I love it. It is actually the only Gaiman book I've read I can say that about. (I have a complicated relationship with his writing.) I have every intention of teaching it and The Jungle Book together when my kids are in sixth grade.

52. Betsy-Tacy by Maude Hart Lovelace
I think this book is lovely but I absolutely can not get Bit interested in it at all.

51. The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo
One of my favorites. I read it for the first time when I was pregnant with Bit and couldn't wait until she was old enough for me to read it to her.


  1. So many I still need to read! I, being a nature fan, should really read Swallows and Amazons. I've seen reference to it a lot lately in various places. I really liked Miraculous Journey--sort of a Velveteen Rabbit story. And you're right--All-of-a-Kind Family is definitely too "precious" for you--that descriptor made me laugh.

    For obvious reasons, I'm a Betsy-Tacy fan--have read all of them and am about to start with Elf!

    I still haven't read Wolves of Willoughby Chase either! (sigh)

    1. Miraculous Journey was a Velveteen Rabbit story but in many ways I agree with the Washington Post article Betsy linked to in her summation.

  2. I love Edward Tulane-I think it's a beautiful redemption story.

    1. I agree it's a redemption story but I still had issues with it and I thought it a little heavy handed. But then again I read it in an afternoon at Barnes and Noble so maybe I'm missing something.